Dumb Beasts and Dead Philosophers
Humanity and the Humane in Ancient Philosophy and Literature
By (author) Catherine Osborne
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Dumb Beasts and Dead Philosophers by Catherine Osborne
Book DescriptionAnimal rights do not feature explicitly in ancient thought. Indeed the notion of natural rights in general is not obviously present in the classical world. Plato and Aristotle are typically read as racist and elitist thinkers who barely recognise the humanity of their fellow humans. Surely they would be the last to show up as models of the humane view of other kinds? In this unusual philosophy book, Catherine Osborne asks the reader to think again. She shows that Plato's views on reincarnation and Aristotle's views on the souls of plants and animals reveal a continuous thread of life in which humans are not morally superior to beasts; Greek tragedy turns up thoughts that mirror the claims of rights activists when they speak for the voiceless; the Desert Fathers teach us to admire the natural perceptiveness of animals rather than the corrupt ways of urban man; the long tradition of arguments for vegetarianism in antiquity highlights how mankind's abuse of other animals is the more offensive the more it is for indulgent ends. What, then, is the humane attitude, and why is it better? How does the humane differ from the sentimental? Is there a truth about how we should treat animals? By reflecting on the work of the ancient poets and philosophers, Osborne argues, we can see when and how we lost touch with the natural intelligence of dumb animals.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780199282067
(240mm x 162mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Clarendon Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 25-Jan-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Catherine Osborne
Philoponus: On Aristotle Physics 1.4-9, Paperback (April 2014)
Explores a range of questions about the basic structure of reality, the nature of prime matter, the principles of change, the relation between form and matter, and the issue of whether things can come into being out of nothing, and if so, in what sense that is true.
Philoponus: On Aristotle Physics 1.1-3, Paperback (April 2014)
In this, the first half of Philoponus' analysis of book one of "Aristotle's Physics", the principal themes are metaphysical. Philoponus explains the apparent conflict between the 'didactic method' and the strict demonstrative method described in the "Analytics".
Dumb Beasts and Dead Philosophers, Paperback (May 2009)
This unusual philosophy book asks the reader to reconsider the received view that animal rights have no place in ancient thought. Catherine Osborne argues that by reflecting on the work of the ancient philosophers and poets, we can see when and how we lost touch with the natural intelligence of dumb animals.
American Catholic History, Paperback (April 2008)» View all books by Catherine Osborne
Offers an overview of the American Catholic experience from both the "top down" of institutional and intellectual history as well as from the "bottom up" of social, devotional, women's and ethnic histories.
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